Preparing your truck for winter can not only mean a safer season for you and your family but more fun too. So what does it mean to winterize your truck? Some people just throw on their winter tires and that’s it. However, checking and changing fluids, stocking supplies and gearing up with the right equipment can help you be prepared for unexpected incidents. Check out our list to get your truck rolling in style this winter.
Install winter tires. Winter tires can go on once the temperature gets below 7C. The special rubber compound in the tires allows them to stay soft in the cold temperatures. Winter tires can help your truck stop up to 15 meters sooner than all-seasons.
Make sure your air pressure is correct. Especially when there’s a cold snap, the change in air temperature outside can affect the air pressure inside your tires. Going from warm to cold quickly can lessen the pressure and make stopping less effective.
Check, change or top up all fluids. Diesel fuel comes in two blends: summer and winter. Without getting into the technical depth of the difference between the two, just know that the viscosity of your oil is important for overall engine health and longevity. Make sure that your oil is rated for your climate.
Check your blades, battery, brakes and belts. Your wiper blades should be changed at least twice a year so they can effectively wipe away blowing snow and rain. Have your battery checked to see if it’s in good enough shape to get your car started and running through the winter. Optimum braking is critical in the winter when your car needs to perform on snow and ice so have them checked along with your engine belts and hoses while you’re at the shop.
Check your a/c and your exhaust systems. Many drivers don’t realize it’s actually your air conditioning system that vehicles use to defrost and de-humidify inside your car. You’ll also want to make sure your exhaust system is intact to avoid leaking exhaust pipes or mufflers which could cause carbon monoxide poisoning and decrease the efficiency of your vehicle. While you’re at it, make sure that block heater is still working.
Pack an emergency kit. Your kit should include some supplies for you and your passengers, including a first aid kit, bottled water, health bars, boots, gloves, and an extra winter coat. Remember to dress for winter every day. Even if it looks sunny and mild when you head out, you could be facing a blizzard on the way back.
Your kit should also contain emergency supplies for your vehicle, including booster cables, extra oil and windshield washer fluid, lock de-icer, flashlight, flares or safety triangles, an ice scraper, a shovel, a bag of salt or gravel, and possibly even some chains for your tires. Did you know if you only have all-season tires, you are required by law to carry chains on certain highways and mountain passes?
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